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Marine Festival kicks off

Tuesday, 8 March 2005

Marine Festival kicks off – Keeping the spotlight on our marine industry 8 March 2005 -- The Marine Festival kicks off in Auckland this week with six high-profile events showcasing the depth of New Zealand’s marine capability to the world, aiming to maximise national and international exposure for this fast growing industry.

The events are Yacht Vision Design Symposia (9-13 March), an international design symposia for world leaders in the marine industry; the Auckland International Boatshow (9-13 March), New Zealand’s premier water based boatshow; the Australasian Marina Operators Association Conference (14-17 March), focussing on the development of the marina sector; and three smaller events, the Classic Yacht Regatta; Marine Trades Challenge; and the Auckland International Dragon Boat Festival.

The government’s national economic development agency New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE) is supporting the Marine Festival because it keeps the international spotlight focused on New Zealand’s world-class marine industry, says David Penny, NZTE Sector Director – Specialised Manufacturing.

Mr Penny says NZTE, the Marine Industry Association of New Zealand and New Zealand Marine Export Group made a strategic decision to cluster the six festival events to maximise the value for international visitors and the local marine industry.

“The big international contingent registered for Yacht Vision attests to the success of that strategy,” says Mr Penny. “The Marine Festival will not only showcase New Zealand’s marine industry to these key influencers, it will also allow our firms to create long term relationships with international companies which will help expand their capability and grow their business.” Mr Penny says many of the more established Marine Festival events have gone from strength to strength over recent years, becoming increasingly self-sustaining and attracting a growing number of overseas delegates, attracted by the innovative new designs and technologies originating from this country.

Export driven and customer focused, New Zealand’s marine industry has enjoyed record growth since 1994. Current turnover is estimated at $1.26 billion annually with exports of $525 million forecast to double over the next five years.

“NZTE’s support for the Marine Festival is part of its strategy to focus on businesses with high-growth potential and industries and sectors in which New Zealand has a long-term sustainable advantage,“ says Mr Penny.

“We see the marine industry as just that, an industry with a big future.”

ENDS

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